From Earth Day to May Day: Towards an Ecological General Strike

Direct actions are planned in the Bay Area between Earth Day on April 22 and May 1st to raise awareness about the intersections of labor, immigration, and environmental issues. Actions may include sit-ins, tree sits, guerrilla gardening, pickets, marches, blockades and strikes. The goal is to challenge the jobs vs. environment myth, to unite workers and environmentalists against the bosses, and rapidly transition unsustainable industries through direct action. The actions will build foundations for directly democratic workers assemblies and environmental unionist caucuses within existing unions that can organize actions to halt the destruction of the planet.

	Workers, the community, and the planet are exploited by the state and capitalist forces that rule over our lives. With capitalism escalating its "extreme energy" rampage of offshore oil drilling, tar sands mining, mountaintop removal, and fracking, a mass movement to oppose these forms of energy is growing and radicalizing. Recently, there has been an increased number of oil spills, pipeline ruptures, oil train derailments, refinery fires, and chemical spills. These disasters have not only harmed the environment but they have also injured and/or killed the very workers whom the capitalists depend on to extract these resources.

The same capitalist economic system destroying the Earth is destroying the lives of the workers with eroding health and safety standards, downsizing and outsourcing the workforce, establishing a “blame the worker” safety culture, and creating dangerous labor conditions all around. These conditions that endanger the workers are also directly harming the communities around them with cancers and asthma from air pollution. Yet boss propaganda seeks to convince us that environmentalists are a threats to jobs. It’s time for workers and environmentalists to take direct action for health and safety and a halt to the destruction of our world.

A globalized ecological insurrection is inevitable and in fact has already begun — from First Nations people leading a militant opposition to new oil pipelines to workers and environmentalists in Japan standing up against nuclear power and pollution. It’s time for an ecological general strike where workers and environmentalists take over and blockade unsustainable industries and dismantle what can’t be rapidly transitioned. Join the action April 22 – May 1: